Illingworth Cartoons on India Daily Mail UK 1942, 1946

Extra(9) A selection of cartoons published in the Daily Mail, UK, in 1942 and during 1946-1947 period, by Leslie Gilbert Illingworth (1902-1979)
From online 'Illingworth Exhibition' hosted by the National Library of Wales at
Links to these cartoons are provided on this page. Click on links to view the cartoons directly on the National Library of Wales website.
Titles of cartoons and text of summaries and historical contexts from National Library of Wales catalogue.

Cartoons included:
  • New policy for India, March 13, 1942
  • New Indian policy, March 31, 1942
  • Move over, Marmaduke, this brute needs bringing to its senses, August 12, 1942
  • Three innocents in the jungle of India/Pakistan, February 25, 1946
  • Civil war and famine are heading towards India, March 19, 1946
  • Civil war and famine threaten India, May 14, 1946
  • Nehru rides the Indian elephant, September 2, 1946
  • Indian politics, November 29, 1946
  • Storm in Bihar, December 10, 1946
  • Free India, May 20, 1947
  • Partition plan, June 4, 1947
  • Race hatred, August 28, 1947
It is very interesting to see, through the eyes of a contemporary observer such as Illingworth, various events in the run-up to India's independence.  From the clarity and detail displayed in framing the issues of the day, it appears that he followed events closely.

New policy for India, March 13, 1942 (click on link to view)
Summary: Women are standing in doorways of a row of houses marked "Ceylon" and "India". The row is on fire, and the the fire has reached the house marked "Burma". A man marked "Cripps" is running along the street holding a document marked "New policy for India".

New Indian policy, March 31, 1942 (click on link to view)

Summary: Three hunters, riding on elephants marked "Congress", "Moslems" and "Princes" are hunting a tiger marked "Indian disunity". Sir Stafford Cripps is waving a flag marked "New Indian policy", and is shouting "Now's your chance".

Historical context: On March 29 1942, Sir Stafford Cripps, special envoy from the Cabinet, unfolded British plans for full independence for India when he met Mr Gandhi in New Delhi. He produced a draft declaration which, if accepted by an Indian constituent assembly, would mean Indian self-government after the war. The sub-continent could be either one Dominion, or two, if the Moslems prefereed that. There would be special arrangements for territories ruled by the Indian princes.

Summary: An aristocrat and a soldier are riding an elephant called 'Congress' which is out of control. The aristocrat with the words ' Velvet Glove Govt' on his clothing is struggling to control the beast while the soldier is climbing out of the box on the elephant's back and is saying to the aristocrat ' Move over, Marmaduke, this brute needs bringing to its senses'. A tiger with Japanese features is hiding in the grass nearby.

Historical context: August 9, 1942 - Gandhi and other Indian leaders were arrested following pro-independence riots.

Summary: An elephant marked "Congress" is facing a snake marked "Moslem league". Underneath the snake is a tiger marked "Famine". In the distance, Sir Stafford Cripps and Hugh Dalton are leading a small sailor marked "IMF" towards them.


Civil war and famine are heading towards India, March 19, 1946(click on link to view)

Summary: Two lines of travelers are waiting at an airport. One line is marked "UNO" and contains people representing world famine and world war. The other line is marked "Passengers for India" and contains Victor Alexander, Stafford Cripps and Frederick Pethick-Lawrence.

Summary: Stafford Cripps, Gandhi and and Mahomed Ali Jinnah are up a tree discussing the Indian constitution in safety, as a woman marked "India" with a child is clinging to the base of the tree fleeing from a tiger marked "Civil war" and a wolf marked "Famine".

Historical context : On May 16 1946, Attlee announced plans for an independent united India.

Summary: Archibald Wavell waves off Nehru, as he prepares to drive the elephant, marked "India". A woman is sitting in a Howdah on the elephant's back, and Mahomed Ali Jinnah is tying explosives to the elephant's tail.
Historical context: On September 2nd 1946, Nehru's cabinet is sworn in.

Indian politics, November 29, 1946(click on link to view)

Summary: Jinnah as a cricketer defending a tiger labelled 'Pakistan'. A cow labelled 'Hindu Intransigence' is crushing a man labelled 'Untouchables', and 'Nehru' and others are arguing in the background.
Historical context: India's Constituent Assembly, which is due to hold its first meeting on December 9, was attacked by both Hindus and Moslems today. Mr Jinnah, the Moslem League leader, said he would boycott the Assembly and described it as "one more blunder". "It is quite obvious", he said "that the Viceroy is blind to the present serious situation and is playing into the hands of Congress". At the same time the Congress leader, Pandit Nehru, was telling his followers that the only good thing about the Assembly was that "Britain will not be directly represented on it".

Storm in Bihar, December 10, 1946(click on link to view)

Summary: A map of Indian provinces. Thunder and lightning cover 'Bihar'.

Free India, May 20, 1947(click on link to view)

Summary: Gandhi, and a group of protesters, including a US sympathiser, are holding placards demanding that the British get out of India. All around them are the bodies of those who have died of hunger or civil war.

Historical context: On May 23 1947, the British cabinet took the step of agreeing to Lord Louis Mountabatten's proposal for the partition of India into two states, one Moslem and the other Hindu.

Partition plan, June 4, 1947(click on link to view)

Summary: Mahomed Ali Jinnah is fanning the flames of a fire. The black smoke marked "Race riots" is reaching up into the sky as Earl Mountbatten attempts to extinguish the fire with an extinguisher marked "Partition plan".

Historical context: On June 2 1947, a fire at a rubber dump in Mitcham, London blots out the sun in the area and on May 23 1947, the British cabinet took the step of agreeing to Lord Louis Mountbatten's proposal for the partition of India into two states, one Moslem and the other Hindu.

Race hatred, August 28, 1947(click on link to view)

Summary: A man, marked "Race hatred" with a sword has caught hold of a woman, marked "Minorities" who has run away from the riots in the streets to an office where there is a paper marked "Renunication of British sovereignty".

Historical context: During August 1947 10,000 are believed to have died in border clashes in the Punjab in India.

About the cartoonist:

Leslie Illingworth

"Leslie Gilbert Illingworth was born in Barry in 1902. He attended Cardiff Art School and then took a job with the Western Mail. He was then awarded a scholarship to Slade School of Art, and after completing his studies, returned to Cardiff to work for the Western Mail as a cartoonist. Illingworth joined the Daily Mail in 1939, and drew cartoons that were to lift Britain's morale during the Second World War, commenting on Churchill's leadership and Allied military victories. After the war ended, Illingworth was able to concentrate more on domestic issues in his cartoons, but kept a keen eye on foreign affairs, especially when they related to Britain.

He became Chief Cartoonist for the satirical magazine Punch in 1945, but remained with the Daily Mail until his retirement in 1969. He died in 1979."

Text of biography from Illingworth online exhibition hosted by National Library of Wales here:


CMP(1) -  From Ayesha Jalal's 'The Sole Spokesman'

CMP(2) -  Congress and Muslim League positions on 12 May 1946

CMP(3) -  The Cabinet Mission Plan 16 May 1946

CMP(4) - Jinnah  and ML  responses to the CMP 22 May  and June 6 1946

CMP(5) -  Jinnah's meeting with Mission Delegation on 4 April 1946

CMP(6) -  Jinnah's meeting with Missiion Delegation on 16 April 1946

CMP(7A) - Maulana Azad's meeting with Mission Delegation on 17 April 1946

CMP(7) -  The Congress unease with parity  8-9 May 1946

CMP(7B) - Jinnah and Azad responses to preliminary proposals 8-9 May 1946

CMP(8A) - Simla Conference meetings on 5 May 1946 on the powers of the Union

CMP(8) -  More exchanges on parity, Simla Conference meeting  11 May 1946

CMP(9) -  Jinnah and Wyatt(1) on Pakistan and CMP, 8 Jan. and 25 May 1946

CMP(10) -  Jinnah and Wyatt(2) on the interim government, 11 June 1946

CMP(11) -   Congress opposition to grouping. Gandhi, Patel and Azad, May 1946

CMP(12) - Congress Working Committee resolutions, May-June 1946

CMP(12A) - Arguments over inclusion of a Congress Muslim, June 1946

CMP(12B) - Behind the scenes-Gandhi, June-July 1946

CMP(12C) - Behind the scenes-Jinnah, June-July 1946

CMP(13) - Jawaharlal Nehru's press conference on the Plan, 10 July 1946

CMP(14) - League rejected Plan, called Direct Action,  July-August 1946

CMP(15) - Viceroy strong-arming Nehru, Gandhi on compulsory grouping, Pethick-Lawrence to Attlee, Aug -Sept 1946

CMP(16) - Intelligence assessment on Jinnah's options and threat of civil war, Sept. 1946

CMP(17) - League Boycott of the Constituent Assembly Dec. 1946

CMP(17A) - Congress "climbdown" on grouping and Jinnah's rejection, January 1947

CMP (A1) - Plain speaking from Sir Khizr Hayat, Abell on the Breakdown plan, Wavell

CMP(A2) - North West Frontier Province, Oct-Nov 1946 and Feb-March 1947

CMP(A3) - Bengal and Bihar, August - November 1946

CMP(A4) - Punjab, February - March 1947

CMP (18) - My take

CMP (19) - What did parity and communal veto mean in numbers?

CMP(20) - Another take -with links to reference material

CMP(21) - Mountbatten discussing CMP with Patel and Jinnah, 24-26 Apr 1947

CMP(22) - A reply on the Cabinet Mission Plan

Extra(1) - Jinnah's speech in March 1941 on independent sovereign Pakistan

Extra(1A) - Jinnah's Speeches and Statements from 1941-1942

Extra(1B) - Jinnah's Speeches and Statements from 1938-1940

Extra(1C) - Jinnah's speeches and Statements from 1943-45

Extra(2) - Gandhi-Jinnah talks in 1944 on defining Pakistan

Extra(3) - BR Ambedkar quoted from his book 'Pakistan or the Partition of India'

Extra(4) - Congress and Muslim parties' on the Communal question 1927-1931

Extra(4A) - Excerpts of Motilal Nehru Committee Report 1928

Extra(4B) - Nehru, Bose, Jinnah Correspondence 1937-38

Extra(5) -  BR Ambedkar on Communal Representation 1909-1947

Extra(6) - Gandhiji's scheme of offering the Prime Ministership to Jinnah in 1947

Extra(6A) - Jinnah on Congress's offers of Prime Ministership 1940-43

Extra (6B) - Apr-Jul 1947 Negotiations on Pakistan between Mountbatten and Jinnah

Extra(7) - M.A.Jinnah and Maulana Azad on two nation theory

Extra(8) - On Separate electorates, Joint electorates and Reserved constituencies

Extra(9) - Links to cartoons on Indian constitutional parleys from the Daily Mail, UK, 1942 and 1946-1947, by L.G. Illingworth

Extra(10) -Nehru Report 1928 (10 MB pdf)
Extra(11) -Iqbal's letters to Jinnah, May-June 1937

Extra(12) -Jinnah, Linlithgow, Sikander Hayat, Pakistan rumblings 1942-43

Durga Das (1) 1919-1931, Jallianwala Bagh to Bhagat Singh

Durga Das (2) 1931-1936, Crescent Card: Jinnah in London to Fazli Husain in Punjab

Durga Das(3) 1937-1940, Provincial Autonomy to Jinnah gets the veto

Durga Das(4) 1940-1945, The War Years: India's War Effort-Pakistan on a platter

Durga Das(5) 1945-1947, The Cabinet Mission to Divide and Quit

1937-1940(2)  Congress and Jinnah fall out in U.P., Jinnah's anti-Congress campaign and the Viceroy gives Jinnah a Veto: Ayesha Jalal, Sarvepalli Gopal and Stanley Wolpert

1937: Congress-Jinnah tussle over coalition government in U. P., M.J. Akbar

1937: Nehru, Jinnah and Coalition Governments, Bimal Prasad

1939-1940: India and the War, Anita Inder Singh

1945-1946: The Elections of 1945-46, Anita Inder Singh

1857-1938 Glimpses of British policy in Punjab: Ian Talbot and David Page

1930-1939 Congress Decline in Bengal, John Gallagher

Glendevon (1) 1937: Congress's Office Acceptance Saga over Governor's Powers

Glendevon (2) 1937-1940: Federation, Jinnah, Congress activism in Princely States

Glendevon (3) 1939-1942: Linlithgow, Congress, Jinnah,War-time Realignments

1939-1947: Jinnah and the Anglo-Muslim League Alliance, Narendra Singh Sarila

1944: Gandhi-Jinnah talks, Jaswant Singh

1830s-1898: British Forward Policy(1)

1899-1947: British Forward Policy(2)

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